Beauty Product Pare Down + Bathroom Organizing Tips and Tricks

Confession: we both love our beauty products, but they tend to pile up like nothing else does! There’s a whole host of reasons this happens, but if you’re like us, you hold on to products because:

A: To be able to afford said “miracle product” you basically forked over an entire paycheck, and now you’re “saving it.”  

B.  You bought a product after some coercing + magical lighting while sitting in the makeup chair, and after bringing it home you’ve decided it’s not quite right.  

C. You’re stockpiling.  Either you found your favorite product on sale, and said “I’ll take 10.”  Or maybe you’ve finally found that perfect shade of foundation, and bought multiples - fearing it would be discontinued.

If you’re reading this list, nodding your head, and thinking “that sounds like me,” you’re not alone. The majority of our clients all seem to have a tough time with their bathrooms and the clutter that tends to go with them.

First things first: be totally honest with yourself, and minimize what you have.

Let’s get rid of those products that you never use. You know what we’re talking about: that glitter eye shadow, unflattering lip stick shades, and hair products that don’t work the way you’d like... sorry, you guys are out!  After that, please check all those expiration dates.  You could be unintentionally introducing harmful bacteria, if you’re keeping items around longer than recommended.  By simplifying, you’ll both clear up space, and spend less time searching for your favorite products. 

makeup organized in a beauty organizer

Next up: now that you’ve minimized, let’s get organized!

Put “like with like” and you’ll be amazed at how much more efficient you are in the morning! Makeup storage can be as simple, as a dedicated makeup bag with various compartments. Or we love pretty acrylic containers, which makes storing your make up neatly and compactly a breeze.  If you keep nail polish and essential oils in your bathroom, these tiered containers work wonders, and keep everything standing upright.   

nail polish organizer
hair and skin care products organized

Finally: Those larger beauty products (these guys always tend to topple like dominos)

To keep your products for skin and hair upright and accessible, grouping the categories together and using a simple white container is amazing for under the counter use, drawers, and cabinets.  Don’t forget to label them, as it’ll keep you accountable, and less likely to slip back into old habits!

Happy Organizing!

Love,

Lindsay and Ashley

Budget Friendly Pantry Glassware - Decant for Less!

One of our top decluttering tips for the kitchen is to decant whenever possible.  Not only does it look beautiful, but you’ll also be amazed by the space saving benefits!  At Style + Dwell, we love a good deal, and for a recent kitchen project with Sarah of Brunette and Babes, we got to scope out some of the best glassware that was both beautiful + wallet friendly. Take a look at her full post here!

For your large dry good items (think those used for baking: flour, sugar, etc.), we love these gallon glass jars at $8 a piece, and half gallon size glass jars for $7. They’ll keep your products nice and fresh, and the large mouth makes scooping out what you need a breeze. They also look pretty too, whether displayed on an open shelf, a baking cabinet, or in a gorgeous pantry.

 

open shelving with glass jars and a display of dishware

Next up: the midis.  These are the workhorses of the pantry glass world, and you’ll find oh so many uses.  Decanting pasta, rice, and lentils are just a few of our favorites.  The 8 oz glass ball jar is a wonderful size, as so many of our products come packaged in that metric.  At a $1.50 a pop, these guys are pretty hard to pass up!   If you need a bit more room, the 16oz ball jars are a great option.  We love to stick a pretty label on the front, and then note on the back any cooking time reminders.

organized and decanted baking supplies

Finally, the minis!  Oh my goodness have you all ever seen such an adorable little jar?!  Yes, I did just call a jar “adorable,” and these are oh so fun when organizing your spices!  By using this strategy you avoid buying multiples, and can easily see when you’re getting low on product.  These are a steal at $5.99 for a pack of 4.  

organized and decanted spices in ball jars
style + dwell organizing

There you have it folks, a pantry, cupboard, or open shelving beautifully done, and on a budget!  Let us know if you have any questions, we love hearing from you!

Happy Organizing!

Love,

Ashley and Lindsay  

Organizing an Allergy Friendly Pantry

Living with food allergies has unfortunately become quite common these days. Did you know that food allergies have increased by 50% in children in the past 20 years? Between gluten, nuts, dairy and sesame to name a few, it can be challenging to keep a safe kitchen for the family member(s) affected by the allergy. What makes this even more difficult is the age of the family member. If it is a child with the allergy, it’s even more important to separate out safe foods when kids start grabbing snacks on their own and cannot yet read labels. I have a child with a peanut allergy. Keeping things separate from her is incredibly important. From a young age, she was capable of climbing and getting into pretty much any cupboard she wanted to so we went with the combination locked cabinet approach. With some allergies, it is easy to eliminate the allergen altogether. With others, it can be more difficult especially when you have multiple children and family members. When it’s not possible to eliminate the allergen from the home completely, organizing your cupboards and pantry in a way that your child can still be independent is very possible. Even if you have eliminated the allergen completely, having foods labeled makes babysitters and other caregivers more comfortable so there are no questions about the safety of the item. While your organizational needs may vary based on the severity and type of food allergy, the below suggestions are a great way to get started on creating a safe, organized pantry.

food allergy organization

Color Coded Containers: Decant and store safe snacks and foods in containers with a specific color top or sticker that your child recognizes as the “safe color.” You can also use red tape to create large X’s on unsafe foods, and keep them out of reach.

Labeled Bins and Containers: If your child is old enough to read, keeping baskets or bins within their reach with their safe foods in them. You can used colored baskets for the younger kids as well. I use bright pink labels and also include these custom labels from Minted. Not only do they help identify things for my daughter, but they are great for labeling her lunch box at school. They are available in a variety of different allergens.

Separate Shelves/Cabinets. You can use the same labeling techniques if you don’t have a dedicated pantry. If you have enough space, dedicating a whole cabinet or shelf with safe food, separate from unsafe food (usually up high) is a great solution as well.

  • Use these same color coding and labeling techniques for the fridge and freezer.

List of Allergies: Always keep a list of allergies inside the pantry or cabinets so babysitters, extended family and friends are always aware of the person’s allergy.

The teal pumpkin project

Teal Pumpkin Project

Teal Pumpkin Project

If you have a child with food allergies, likely you are familiar with the Teal Pumpkin Project. The Teal Pumpkin Project is dedicated to helping children with food allergies have a safe, fun and enjoyable Trick or Treating experience. When you put out a teal colored pumpkin, you are alerting trick or treaters that you have safe, non food items for those with an allergy. Because allergens can be hidden in so many treats, the Teal Pumpkin Project is non food items only. We fill our teal pumpkin with glow sticks, bubbles, stickers and other small items that kiddos would enjoy. For more information on how you can participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project, visit https://www.foodallergy.org/welcome-teal-pumpkin-projectr-insider

Happy Organizing!

Love,

Ashley + Lindsay

How to Organize + Rotate Kid's Toys in 4 Easy Steps

Kid’s toys. They seem to multiply daily, and i’m not entirely sure where they keep coming from. Between birthday parties, holidays, freebies and hand me downs, keeping kid’s toys minimal, organized and always entertaining can be a real challenge. How many times has your kid come running out of their fully stocked playroom proclaiming that they are bored and have NO toys and EVERYONE else has more toys than they do? The truth of the matter is that they have plenty of toys, they just can’t find them, or, they’ve played with them too long and are bored. Understandable. Usually, the problem is that they have too many options at their disposal. So what can you do about it? Rotate them out. Creating a rotating toy supply is an easy way to keep your playroom or toy area minimal and fresh and it’s quite easy to do.

Step 1: Prepare your space. Dedicate an empty area of a closet, basement or even garage space where you can store toys that aren’t in use. Use bins or drawers to sort these toys by type and label them with the contents. I have a large empty area in my daughter’s closet that I use for this purpose.

organizing kids toys and games

Step 1: Declutter, Donate or Dispose. If your kiddos are on the younger end, this is best done when they are not at home…if they see you take something away, all of a sudden it’s their new favorite toy! (shocking…) Remove toys that are no longer age appropriate and either donate them or create a small box of 3-4 things to keep around for when little ones are visiting the house. Get rid of anything with broken or missing pieces (including puzzles, old games, etc) and now is the time for some of those obnoxiously loud battery operated toys to all of a sudden disappear… :)

Stuffy overload? Sometimes it can be difficult to get rid of any kind of lovie. I adore this  toy hammock  to contain the mountains of stuffed animals we have around the house. Attach one in the playroom and one in the kiddo’s room for easy stuffy storage.

Stuffy overload? Sometimes it can be difficult to get rid of any kind of lovie. I adore this toy hammock to contain the mountains of stuffed animals we have around the house. Attach one in the playroom and one in the kiddo’s room for easy stuffy storage.

Tip: Make your kids responsible. If your kids are old enough, allow them to be a part of the process. When they have a birthday or gift giving holiday approaching, have them go into their space and choose 5-10 things they no longer play with to donate.

Step 2: Sort and minimize. Now that you have the items you want to keep, it’s time to sort and minimize. It’s overwhelming for a child to have out 10 puzzles, 5 different sets that include cars, trains and tracks, 7 baby dolls, 12 coloring books, etc. at one time. You get the point. It’s 100% okay to keep all of these, but this is where the rotation comes in. Only keep out 2-3 puzzles at a time, 1 or 2 dolls, etc. Put the rest in the labeled bins and put them away.

Having a rotating library is a great way to contain the clutter of too many books. And, prevents you from having to read the same bedtime story over and over again!

Having a rotating library is a great way to contain the clutter of too many books. And, prevents you from having to read the same bedtime story over and over again!

TIP: I love storing our puzzles and board games in these plastic organizers when the original boxes become crushed and broken. Cut out the picture from the original box and attach it to the new organizer.

Step 3: Get organized. Create an organizational system that works for you and your space. I love bins. I find that my kids are more likely to put away their toys when each type of toy or activity has a dedicated bin either labeled with the toy name, or a photo of the item if they are too young to read. Kids are more likely to put away their things if they have a dedicated and easy place to do it. I absolutely LOVE the Ikea TROFAST storage system. It holds items large and small and at easy reach for little arms and hands. Try not to organize items TOO specifically. I used to have my kid’s Duplos separated into sets and found that clean up was a nightmare. Under age 5 it’s much easier to just have a single bin that holds all of them. The simpler the system, the easier it is for everyone to maintain.

kids playroom organization and bins

Step 4: Rotate. I rotate my kid’s toys out every 1-2 months, more if it’s summer vacation and they are home more often. I always do a big toy purge right before a birthday or gift giving holiday to make room for the new. Of course there are certain things that have a permanent place in the playroom…Magna Tiles, Legos (unless you have multiple sets) the dollhouse, and the Paw Patrol life size lookout tower…do you have any idea how much trouble I would be in if that thing disappeared? :)

Happy Organizing!

Love,

Ashley + Lindsay

Organize the Chaos of Kid’s Dinnerware in 15 Minutes

Mismatched cups and lids, colorful plates that clatter and won’t stack, and a mountain of snack cups.  Does any of this sound familiar?  Kid’s dinnerware is usually “eclectic” to say the least, and bought over a series of years unlike the adult counterparts.  Before you know it these colorful groupings of plastic are taking over cupboards and drawers, or worse - the space where your wine glasses used to live ;)

Not to worry, there’s an easy solution to corral this clutter.  In fact, yours truly, and many of the families we work with have taken the new AAP recommendations as motivation to overhaul their dishes, and ditch the plastic.

plastic free kids dishes organized

First things first: declutter.  Take a close look at all your kids plates, bowls, utensils, cups, water bottles, and snack cups.  Do you have the coordinating parts to all of them?  Do they actually all get used?  If the answer is no to either of these two questions, out they go!

Next: reassess.  Do the dishes meet the current needs of your family?  Often as kids grow certain feeding items become obsolete, as their needs change.  One of our favorite tricks is to use cups that grow with our kids.  We love that these Pura water bottles also seamlessly transition into a snack cups, and baby bottles.  This means less parts and less waste- a double win in our book!

plastic free kids drinkware

 Stack it up. If we can get items to stack neatly together, we’re in love. These adorable stainless cups, save space like crazy. They’re indestructible and the perfect size for little hands. There’s also a too cute for words Sippy cup version, and both options are interchangeable and stackable.

stainless kids cups
stainless and silicon kids sippy cups

Notice a theme about stackable items yet? They just save so much space, and let’s be honest for most of us kitchen real estate is limited.  For cereal and pasta these colorful silicone bowls are a fabulous size, and won’t hurt the floor if they get chucked across the room.  The same goes for these silicone sectioned plates.  If your kids are anything like ours then you know how much trouble you’re in should one type of food accidentally touch another ;).

silicone kids bowls

Put it all back. Now that all you’ve paired down you’re ready to put everything in its place.  Choose a drawer or a cupboard that your kids can reach (is there anything better then when little ones can help set and clear the table?!). You may find risers helpful in cabinets, and for drawers we love these bamboo drawer dividing organizers.  You all know we love labels, and they can be great for keeping kiddos (and other family members ;) accountable.


Happy organizing!

Love

Ashley + Lindsay 



 

Up Your Pantry Style Game

Organizing a pantry is one of our favorite things to do!  Decant into pretty glassware, add in some baskets and cereal canisters, and top it off with some pretty labels. That’s about as good as it gets...right?!  We thought so too, until we discovered removable wallpaper.  For this particular project we used Chasing Paper’s gorgeous print: Lemon Fresh. You guys, this stuff is seriously all sorts of amazing!

organized pantry with wallpaper

Adhesive wallpaper yields beautiful results, and it’s a pice of cake to work with.  It has a removable backing, which makes installation  breeze.  Should you ever need to remove it, then just peel it right off.  Yep, it’s really just that easy!

removable wallpaper prep

Step 1.  Prep you space

To get started you’ll want to take measurements of the area you’ll be working with.  We love the advice of “measure twice, and cut once.”  You may want to add a little bit of an overage, as it’s much easier to use an X-ACTO knife to cut off any excess vs. finding yourself short on product.   You'll also want to wipe down the walls, and make sure its been at least 4 weeks since they were last painted.

installing adhesive wallpaper

Step 2. Application

We love working with Chasing Paper products, as they come in easy to manage 2’ x 4’ panels. For a smaller space such a pantry, we found it works best to peel all the backing off first, set the paper print side down, and then slowly put the paper onto the wall. We always start with the top middle, work our way outward, and smooth as we go. If you have electrical outlets to go around, don’t worry it’s not a big deal. First, take off the face plate. Then wallpaper over the outlet, and then use and X-ACTO knife to carefully cut around the outlet (it’s never a bad idea to turn off the electricity when doing this).

Organized Pantry and decor

Step 3. Style it up

Once all your wallpaper is on, start placing your baskets and jars back in the pantry. For snacks, we love these large glass jars in the 1 gallon size, for those Costco purchases, we also love the 2 gallon option. For your items that need a tight seal, the Bormioli glass jars are one of our favorites. Finally, those larger items that you don’t want to decant, labeled baskets (and how cute are these seagrass ones?) are a great way to keep the whole family organized.

Happy Organizing!

Love,

Lindsay + Ashley

Creating a Family Command Center

The Dream: No more piles of completed (or not completed!) school work. No more wondering what’s for dinner. No more lost invitations, flyers and other pieces of mail. No more wondering who has sharing day at school or who’s day it is to bring class snack.

The Reality: Our customized Family Command Center can do all of this and more. Let’s be honest…keeping track of everyone’s schedules is difficult, especially when there is more than one child with multiple school assignments, after school activities and various appointments. There are so many ways to going about keeping a family calendar accessible for everyone. One of our favorite ways to do this is with a central Family Command Center. This is an area of your home that houses the calendar, menu board (for meal planning…If you don’t do this already, you should! More on that later!) note boards, baskets and other items to keep track of your family’s activities and paperwork.

We recently completed a command center that included all of these items. The calendar, menu board and note board are Style + Dwell originals, but you can make your own if you have a Cricut or other craft cutter.

Happy Organizing!

Love,

Lindsay + Ashley

Using any blank space in your home, you can create a Family Command Center. This can be in your kitchen, mudroom or any other space your family frequently uses.

Using any blank space in your home, you can create a Family Command Center. This can be in your kitchen, mudroom or any other space your family frequently uses.

Menu Board: Our acrylic menu board is perfect for planning out the week’s meals. This not only helps you plan out your shopping trips, but eliminates the constant “What’s for dinner mom?” questions. Try planning out your week every Sunday. We promise it will make your week run a lot smoother. Fun stickers and clings can be used for for a more fun visual.

Acrylic Menu Board

Acrylic Calendar: We love using these types of calendars. Not only are they reusable and totally customizable, but they are beautiful as well! We recommend using wet erase markers to color code each family member’s schedule. We also love using reusable stickers and clings to make the calendar fun and allow the little ones to recognize images of what they have going on that day.

Using our acrylic calendar, you can color code each child’s schedule with wet erase markers and reusable stickers.

Using our acrylic calendar, you can color code each child’s schedule with wet erase markers and reusable stickers.

Magnetic Board + White Board: Wedding invitations, birthday party invites and other important paper need a safe home when they come into the house so they don’t get lost. If you have a refrigerator that has panels to match your cabinetry or a stainless steel one that isn’t magnetic, you need something that is! I love this magnetic board and attached a small white board for my running shopping list. Using a magnetic marker organizer keeps your pens and markers in easy reach.

magnetic board command center

Wall Mounted Organizers: We gave each child their own personalized organizer to drop “to-do” items. When the kids come home from school, they empty their bags into these wall mounted baskets which allows us to go through them keep important papers such as permission slips and homework items visible.

Personalized homework drop zones for each child

Personalized homework drop zones for each child

Note Board: Sometimes you don’t have a singular wall to house all of these items. We love our wall mounted acrylic notes board to write down important reminders. We have this one set up over the kitchen desk. Add a couple plants and voila! Cute and functional.

acrylic notes board

Organizing Your Kitchen Pantry in 7 Simple Steps

A few weeks ago we had the opportunity to organize Jen Biswas of @paisleyandsparrow's gorgeous kitchen pantry. Jen has a stunning home, amazing kitchen, incredible style and needed a pantry to match.

There is nothing we love more than a beautifully styled pantry. Nothing. Give us decanted bulk goods, perfectly placed baskets and pretty labels and we're a couple of happy girls. Have we talked about our love of Lazy Susans? There are so many organizing options out there to fit any type of pantry, big or small. Check out our 7 kitchen pantry organization tips on Jen's blog!

Happy Organizing!

Love,

Lindsay + Ashley

Decant, decant, decant!

Decant, decant, decant!

Jen's Pantry before we started...!

Jen's Pantry before we started...!

Jen's completely organized and styled pantry!

Jen's completely organized and styled pantry!

We love using label clips for baskets and bins.

We love using label clips for baskets and bins.

Lindsay applying our signature labels

Lindsay applying our signature labels

Our love of Lazy Susans

Our love of Lazy Susans

Styling a Bar Cart in 3 Simple Steps

bar cart set up for summer entertaining

Throwing an end of the Summer soirée, or just having a few friends over for cocktails?  Our number one obsession for serving up the perfect drink display is to corral everything on a gorgeous bar cart.  Not only do bar carts look great, but they make grabbing what you need a snap.  We’ve gotten a lot of questions about “what exactly goes on a bar cart,” so without further ado...

Step 1: Create a beautiful backdrop

We love nothing more than fresh cut flowers, and ready to go drink accompaniments.  For this particular party the drink du jour was G + T’s, so having pretty bottles of tonic water, cut up cucumbers, and lime wedges in pretty glasses was key.

Gin and tonic bar cart setup

Step Two: Glassware on display

Running in and out of the house to bring a guest a wine glass, isn’t anyone’s idea of fun.  Save yourself the trouble by displaying glasses on your cart, so party goers can easily help themselves!

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Step 3: Have a variety of cold beverages 

While we will happily drink Rosé all day, your guests may want just a few other choices on hand.  They’ll be sure to appreciate your thoughtfulness if you have multiple options available of both alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages.  Be sure to stock up on ice before your party, and then fill a pretty bucket just before the guests arrive.  

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And our most important tip... have fun!  A relaxed host is a fabulous host.  Doing a little extra prep work on the front end, makes for an incredible summer evening. 

Cheers!

 

 

 

 

STYLE + DWELL is a part of one or more affiliate marketing networks.  By clicking and/or purchasing items via links on this site and across STYLE + DWELL social media platforms, we may receive a commission. All thoughts and opinions are our own.

3 Easy Ways to Simplify Your Morning Routine

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Let's face it...mornings with kids are stressful. Getting a child up, dressed, fed and out the door on time is near impossible, which is why most parents are constantly running on "kid time." Luckily, there are a few things that you can do the night before to make your mornings run just a bit smoother. 

Select outfits

NO one wants to battle a child in the morning about what they are going to wear that day. Allowing your child to select their outfit the night before, and lay it out, takes some of the guesswork out of the morning. Of course, there is always the possibility that your kid will change their mind that morning (pretty standard, right?) But, at least we are putting the choice and power into their hands. 

Pack backpacks and lunches

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Assign everyone their own hook or area in the house to keep their backpack and other items they typically bring to and from school.  Make this the drop zone for after school so you aren't running around the house searching for backpacks, sports gear and lunchboxes in the morning. Making your lunches the night before gives you one less thing to think about in the morning. Bento box style lunchboxes make packing lunches easy. We love the Lunchbots Trio for easy packing. Hey mom and dad, you can use these too...pack your lunch at night and pop it in your briefcase or throw it in your fridge for a quick and easy lunch. 

Prepare breakfast

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Use the timer on your coffee maker...they put it there for a reason! Did you know that my 3 year old can get his own cereal and milk in the morning? He sure can...and no milk ends up on the floor. I'm serious. The Sistema divided bowl allows you to put milk in one part, and cereal in the other (or yogurt and fruit, the options are endless!) Prepare this at night, put it in the fridge and you won't have anyone waking you up at the crack of dawn to get them breakfast. Trust me on this one...Even my 3 year old can do this flawlessly! I get an extra hour or two of sleep because of it. Moms and dads, do the same. I love prepping a yogurt, fruit and granola parfait in a small mason jar and having it ready for me in the morning. Layer the yogurt, fruit then granola in that order and the granola will stay crunchy until morning. 

Follow these 3 simple steps and you will be on your way to a more enjoyable morning!

 

 

 

STYLE + DWELL is a part of one or more affiliate marketing networks.  By clicking and/or purchasing items via links on this site and across STYLE + DWELL social media platforms, we may receive a commission. All thoughts and opinions are our own.